14 days in North Island Itinerary

14 days in North Island Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Island trip itinerary planner

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Route & dates

14 days in North Island Itinerary

Start: Patong, Phuket
bus + Fly:  19​h 30​min
1
Auckland
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
2
Paihia
— 2 nights
+2
taxi + Fly + taxi:  3​h
3
Waitomo Caves
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
4
Whakapapa
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
5
Rotorua
— 3 nights
Fly:  3​h
6
Wellington
— 2 nights
Fly + bus:  19​h 45​min
End: Patong, Phuket

1
night
Auckland

Auckland ©
The largest and most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland combines a rich history and thriving contemporary culture in an abundance of museums, art galleries, and performance venues.
On the 23rd (Mon), stop by Pauanesia and then don't miss a visit to SkyTower. Keep things going the next day: brush up on your military savvy at Auckland War Memorial Museum, enjoy the thrill of live dance at SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton's Aquarium, and then awaken your taste buds at some of the top wineries in the area.

For reviews, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the Auckland travel planning tool .

Patong, Thailand to Auckland is an approximately 19.5-hour combination of bus and flight. You can also do a combination of bus and flight. The time zone difference moving from Indochina Time (ICT) to New Zealand Standard Time (NZST) is 5 hours. Traveling from Patong in December, expect nights in Auckland to be little chillier, around 20°C, while days are cooler, around 20°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Tue) so you can drive to Paihia.

Things to do in Auckland

Tours Museums Zoos & Aquariums
Find places to stay Dec 23 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
SkyTower ©
SkyTower
Auckland War Memorial Museum ©
Auckland War Memorial Museum
Wine Tours & Tastings

2
nights
Paihia

Paihia ©
The main tourist town in the Bay of Islands area, Paihia gives visitors a good range of accommodations, a convenient town center, long sandy beaches, and interesting architecture.
On the 25th (Wed), get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, then steep yourself in history at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, and then identify plant and animal life at Wildlife Areas. On the 26th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: identify plant and animal life at Paihia Harbour and then look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas.

To see maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Paihia itinerary maker site .

Traveling by car from Auckland to Paihia takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 26th (Thu) so you can travel to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Paihia

Wildlife Outdoors Tours
Find places to stay Dec 24 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Waitangi Treaty Grounds ©
Waitangi Treaty Grounds
Scuba & Snorkeling
Dolphin & Whale Watching

2
nights
Waitomo Caves

Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
On the 27th (Fri), explore the fascinating underground world of Waitomo Glowworm Caves, then surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, then Head underground at Ruakuri Cave, and finally hike along Ruakuri Walk. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 28th (Sat): explore the fascinating underground world of Caveworld, get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and then head outdoors with Waitomo Clay Birds.

To see maps, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Waitomo Caves online tour builder .

Traveling by combination of taxi and flight from Paihia to Waitomo Caves takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of flight and bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Sat) early enough to travel to Whakapapa.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Outdoors Tours Parks
Find places to stay Dec 26 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Waitomo Glowworm Caves ©
Waitomo Glowworm Caves
Ruakuri Walk ©
Ruakuri Walk

2
nights
Whakapapa

Whakapapa ©
On the 29th (Sun), admire the sheer force of Taranaki Falls, then take in the dramatic scenery at Tawhai Falls, and then trek along Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Keep things going the next day: explore the striking landscape of Tongariro Crossing Shuttles and then hike along Horsemtrails.

Plan trip to Whakapapa with our itinerary maker to find out where to go and what to do.

You can drive from Waitomo Caves to Whakapapa in 2.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Mon) to allow time to travel to Rotorua.

Things to do in Whakapapa

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trip

Tongariro National Park
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Tongariro Alpine Crossing ©
Tongariro Alpine Crossing
Horsemtrails ©
Horsemtrails
Taranaki Falls ©
Taranaki Falls

3
nights
Rotorua

Surrounded by lakes and featuring impressive areas of geothermal landscape, the city of Rotorua offers an otherwordly landscape and a welcoming, peaceful environment, with the culture of the native Maori people very much in the foreground.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Rotorua: Taupo (Adrenaline & Extreme Tours, Huka Falls Walkway, & more) and Hobbiton Movie Set (in Hinuera). There's lots more to do: witness a stunning natural landmark at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, delve into the lush surroundings at Redwoods, Whakarewarewa Forest, get interesting insight from Tours, and identify plant and animal life at Redwoods Treewalk.

To find maps, ratings, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Rotorua sightseeing planning site .

You can drive from Whakapapa to Rotorua in 2.5 hours. In December, plan for daily highs up to 25°C, and evening lows to 17°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) early enough to travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Rotorua

Outdoors Parks Nature

Side Trips

Taupo, Hobbiton Movie Set
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 2:
Highlights from your plan
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland ©
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland
Huka Falls Walkway ©
Huka Falls Walkway

2
nights
Wellington

Wellington
Wellington, the world's southernmost capital city and New Zealand's second most populous urban area, combines the nation's rugged history and nature with its modern and cosmopolitan present.
Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Fri): get a sense of history and politics at New Zealand Parliament, then admire the natural beauty at Wellington Botanic Garden, then take a memorable ride with Wellington Cable Car, and finally examine the collection at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

For maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Wellington day trip planning website .

Traveling by flight from Rotorua to Wellington takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. In January, plan for daily highs up to 24°C, and evening lows to 17°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Wellington

Museums Parks Historic Sites

Side Trip

Wellington Botanic Garden
Find places to stay Jan 2 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Wellington Botanic Garden ©
Wellington Botanic Garden
Wellington Cable Car ©
Wellington Cable Car

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